Tempus features Ben Grupe's playful, unique spin on familiar dishes.
For years, chef Ben Grupe has been dazzling the culinary world with his talent. He's cooked at some of the most prominent private clubs in the country, served as captain of the U.S. Culinary Olympics team and was a second place finisher to represent the country at the prestigious Bocuse d'Or.
Now, St. Louis diners will finally get to experience Grupe's talent in the form of his debut restaurant, Tempus (4370 Manchester Avenue, 314-349-2878)
, which opens today in the Grove. Roughly a year and a half in the making, Tempus will open with a focus on at-home dining, consisting of individual food and drink options. Eventually, this will expand to more family-style meals and outdoor dining at the restaurant.
Though proud of his background, Grupe sees Tempus as somewhat of a departure from the elite culinary competitions he's spent much of his career doing. While it is elegant and rooted in classic techniques, Grupe has created Tempus to be a welcoming, approachable restaurant that serves thoughtful interpretations of familiar dishes.
"Everything about Tempus is designed to bring a sense of what is familiar, crave-able and comforting at a time when everything seems uncertain," says Grupe.
To that end, Tempus' opening menu consists of such comfort classics as a beef rib with "dumplings," beets and cabbage, black cod with kombu clam broth, potatoes and trout roe and gnocchi with maitake mushrooms, celery root and parmesan reggiano cheese. Grupe is also offering sandwiches, such as a chicken sandwich and a lamb belly version. Sides include everything from an iceberg wedge to dinner rolls with sorghum butter and country ham.
Though Tempus' dining room remains closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, diners can expect a stylish, 50-seat space when the timing is right to open it.
“I’m proud to offer a new dining option in my hometown that I believe will complement the existing St. Louis culinary scene, and specifically help nourish and bolster the Grove community and surrounding neighborhoods,” says Grupe. “Our goal is to create spectacular food that includes influence from the many cultures that make up ‘American’ cuisine, accompanied by thoughtful service and genuine hospitality, without the dine-in experience. Locals can enjoy everything Tempus has to offer from their living rooms.”
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